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NIA Women Scientists Advisors (WSA)

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WSA Principals

NIA WSA Postdoctoral Members

  • Luisa Baca, M.D.

Past WSA Members


Date Member
1993-1995 Michele Evans, M.D.
1993-1995 Nikki Holbrook, Ph.D.
1993-1995 Cheryl Grady, Ph.D.
2005-2009 Francesca Bosetti, Ph.D.
2005-2010 Cathy Wolkow, Ph.D.
2010-Present Lori Beason-Held, Ph.D.
2011-2013 Yie Liu, Ph.D.
2012-2018 Henriette van Praag, Ph.D.
2018-2020 Isabel Beerman, Ph.D.
2019-Present Nicole Noren Hooten, Ph.D.
2020-Present Payel Sen, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Members

Date Member
2014 Jess Curtis, Ph.D. 
2015 Sylvie Raver, Ph.D.  
2015-2016 Anna McCarrey, Ph.D.   
2015-2016 Chinmoyee Maharana, Ph.D.
2015-2016 Sarah Mitchell, Ph.D.
2015-2018 Yuyoung Joo, Ph.D. 
2015-2016 Min Ju Kang, Ph.D.  
2017-2020 Becca McPerson, Ph.D.
2018-2019 Cristina Banuelos, Ph.D.   
2018-2021 Marta Woloszynoska-Fraser, Ph.D.  
2019-2021 Sharmin Hossain, Ph.D. 
2020-present Perla Moreno Castilla, Ph.D. 
2022-present Jamila Asgar, Ph.D. 
2022-present Luisa Baca, M.D.      

History of the Women Scientists Advisors

In 1991 as a director of NIH, Dr. Bernadine Healy established a Task Force to examine the status of intramural women scientists.

In November 1992, the Task Force issued a final report recommending that each IC have a Woman Scientist Advisor (WSA).  In 1993, the NIH WSA Committee was formed with representatives from each IC.  Click here to learn more about the WSA.

Mission of the Women Scientists Advisors

The mission of the NIA Women Scientists Advisors (WSA) is to foster achievement and support career development of women scientists, and to promote an equitable and diverse scientific community.


In collaboration with the WSA of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), we host a variety of events each year.

  • We host an annual Winter Tea to promote communication between women scientists from different laboratories and institutes. 
  • We give annual Achievement and Travel Awards for Excellence in Scientific Research which are presented to outstanding postdocs, staff scientists and investigators.
  • We sponsor a ‘Successful Women in Science’ discussion series centered around career trajectories in science.
  • We host a ‘Women in Science’ Seminar Series where exemplary postdocs and staff scientists are invited to share their research with the institutes.
  • We sponsor an annual panel discussion about careers in science from a woman’s perspective.
  • We invite successful women from the local community to talk about their careers.  Past guests have included Carla Hayden, CEO of the Enoch Pratt Public Library; Julia Marciari-Alexander, Executive Director of the Walters Art Museum; Dr. Lena Wen, Baltimore City Health Commissioner; Dr. Cathy Deangelis, Editor-in-Chief Emerita of JAMA; Dr. Ellen Stofen, Director of Smithsonian's Air & Space Museum; and Melissa Hyatt, Baltimore County Police Chief.

Research Award Winners


2011 Research Award Winners

Lenore Launer, Deborah Croteau, Robin Minor



2012 Research Award Winners

Suhasini Avvaru, Myriam Gorospe, Eleanor Simonsick



2013 Research Award Winners

Nicole Noren Hooten, Yael Yaniv



2014 Research Award Winners

Julie Mattison, Sarah Mitchell, Tamara Harris



2015 Research Award Winners

Simonetta Camandola, Jennifer Illuzzi



2016 Research Award Winners

Monica Bodogai, Michele Evans, Anna McCarrey



2017 Research Award Winners

Qu (Teresa) Tian, Olga Fedorova



2018 Research Award Winners

Yazhou Li, Myong-Hee (Mia) Sung, Jie Ding



2019 Research Award Winners

Sara Bandres Ciga, Nicole Armstrong, May Baydoun



2020 Research Award Winners

Top row: Lori Beason-Held, Marina Weiler, Isabel Beerman

Bottom row: Achouak Achour, Mayuri Tanaka



2021 Research Award Winners

Top row: Payel Sen, Dushani Palliyaguru, Roshni Roy

Bottom row: Allison Herman, Martina Rossi



2022 Research Award Winners

Top row: Jennifer Martindale, Natalie Landeck, Ruth Chia

Bottom row: Sara Saez-Atienzar, Eleonora Duregon


Special Issue in Ageing Research Reviews featuring Women in Aging Research

Edited by Robert Brosh, Jr., Nicole Noren Hooten of the NIA IRP.

NIH WSA Anita B. Roberts Lecture Series honoring, Distinguished Women Scientists at NIH:


Women's History Month (

International Women’s Day


NIH Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion:

NIH Chief Officer for Scientific Workforce Diversity (COSWD) Office:

NIH Working Group on Women in Biomedical Careers:

NIH Childcare Resources:

Resource referral service: 1-800-777-1720

Webinar on referral service: Child Care

Child and Family Programs:

  • This site has a section with programs and services organized according to employment status (federal employee, trainee, contractor, etc.)

Child and Family Programs info during the pandemic: Click here 

  • Lists options for services and programs according to employment status

NIH Child and Family Program: (301)-827-3250

Ms. Linda Owen, Program Specialist:

Back-up Care Program:

Childcare Subsidy Program:

Childcare Centers:

  • There are currently no NIH childcare centers available in the Baltimore area

Parent Coach:

Lunch and Learn Webinars:


Caregiver Support: (301) 496-3164

An official website of the National Institutes of Health